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Influence of Seed Priming on Growth, Yield and Fodder Quality of Pearl Millet Cultivars

Influence of Seed Priming on Growth, Yield and Fodder Quality of Pearl Millet Cultivars

Muhammad Zeeshan Nadeem1, Muhammad Farrukh Saleem1*, Muhammad Ashfaq Wahid1 and Muhammad Anwar ul Haq2

1Department of Agronomy, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Pakistan; 2Institute of Soil and Environmental Sciences, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Pakistan.

 
*Correspondence | Muhammad Farrukh Saleem, Department of Agronomy, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Pakistan; Email: mfsuaf@yahoo.com 

ABSTRACT

Less fodder yield with poor quality cannot fulfill the livestock fodder and nutrition requirements in semi-arid regions, particularly during lean period. To improve initial stand establishment and the fodder yield and quality in pearl millet cultivars through seed priming, a two years field study was conducted at research area of department of agronomy, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Pakistan. Three seed priming treatments viz. hydro priming (48h), ascorbate (40 mg L-1) and calcium chloride (100 mg L-1) including one control (no-priming) were tested with four pearl millet cultivars (YBS-98, 18-BY, Ghana White and Sargodha Bajra 2011) during the experimentation. Treatments were arranged in randomized complete block design and replicated thrice. The results revealed that seed germination, plant growth, fodder yield and quality were improved by all seed priming agents over the control, but CaCl2 priming outclassed all other priming agents for all the attributes. For example, seed priming of CaCl2 ­increased plant height significantly during both years of study over the other priming agents. Similarly, maximum fodder yield during both growing seasons (67 t ha-1) was observed under CaCl2 seed priming. Likewise, fodder crude proteins, crude fiber contents, ash contents and ether extractable fat were increased prominently by CaCl2 over the other priming agents. Among the cultivars, Sargodha Bajra 2011 performed better than other cultivars it showed better adaptability for more pearl millet fodder yield and quality. Therefore, seed priming with CaCl2 can be used to increase pearl millet fodder yield and quality to overcome the fodder scarcity under semi-arid regions.

 

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Pakistan Journal of Agricultural Research

March

Vol. 35, Iss. 1, Pages 1-258

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